The Next Generation

It has often saddened me that, up to this point, neither of my boys have been interested in learning to knit. I keep offering, never pushing, just letting them know it’s an option. Fingers are crossed that eventually one of them takes me up on the offer!

In the meantime, I have taught a friend to knit. She’s currently working on her third project, a blanket. She’s coming along swimmingly and I can’t wait to see her fabulous project! ūüėÄ

Today I have the wonderful kids of one of my oldest and best friends with me. The older of the two is interested in blogging. What better way for her to see what goes into a blog post than to write one about her and her brother’s visit!

These two are no strangers to my knitting. For Tori I’ve knit her a¬†blue hat¬†and a¬†stripey hat, both of which look lovely on her! For her baby brother I’ve knit¬†a newborn hat¬†and his Blankie¬†(aka TT). ¬†As if having more small people to knit for isn’t an awesome gift (which it is. The smaller the object the faster it goes, you know!) now I know that in just a few years I *will* get to pass on my skills to Tori. And I couldn’t be happier than if it were one of my boys.

Knitting, sewing, crocheting, cross stitch, these are all skills that have been passed down from one generation to the next. Getting to take part in the passing down of knowledge is one of the best things in life, to me.

What about you, wonderful friends? Who’ve you passed your knowledge on to? How did it make you feel? Let me know in the comments and I’ll see you next week!

Milestones…

Everything in life has milestones. First steps, first day of school, first date, and on it goes. Today, over on the Facebook page, I realized that Knittin With Kittens is close to a milestone of its own as well as just passing another.

It’s been a year now that KwK has been around. Thank you, first and foremost, to everyone who wanders over to my corner of the internet. It means a lot to know that there are others out there who take time out of their day to read my thoughts and tutorials.

The upcoming milestone is that we’re close to 100 likes! This is a milestone that I had hoped to reach, but didn’t think it would be within a year! If you haven’t taken a peek at the Facebook page, I encourage you to. That’s where I post links to articles about knitting as well as knitting memes.

In honor of the many milestones of life, blogging, and knitting, my next tutorial post will be my favorite method of joining in the round. Figuring this out was a major milestone for me. :)

First Fiber Festival

This past weekend was Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival, affectionately known as MDSW by its many vendors and attendees. This was my first ever festival, and it’s pretty big in the world of fiber enthusiasts. What can I say? My motto tends to be go big or go home!

There were LOTS of things I did over my weekend, so I will start with the first thing I watched once we got to the grounds. A sheep shearing demonstration. What was absolutely amazing about this demo is that the shearer did NOT use electric shears, but hand-powered shears. While he sheared another professional shearer answered questions and explained what they do and how it benefits the sheep. Here are a few of the pictures taken by me and the group of friends I went with. (More on them and what else we saw Thursday!)

Shearing by Hand

Shearing Done¬†Shearing the sheep. The sheep didn’t make a peep!Full Coat

The full pelt after being sheared. From here it needs to be carded and spun before it can be knit or crocheted with.

Sheep backs

These guys were happily chomping on grass. They were so fluffy!Sheep

Here’s another little guy. He had already been shorn and had a blanket to keep him comfy in the drafty barn.

Sheep TrimmingThis guy was actually just getting trimmed, not sheared. He was super patient for the whole process, though.

 

So Close!

I’m so close I can almost taste it! The Gansey Wristers that I started the day before Thanksgiving are just 10 rows from being done!

In case you were wondering, that’s where I’ve been. Working (at a pace so slow that snails look like Formula 1 cars) on these mitts. I told myself no new projects, no cross stitching, no working on crochet, and no letting myself be distracted by anything I could use to procrastinate.

It’s not that I dislike the pattern. I really do like it. I enjoy the yarn I’m working with. The needle size is the range I’m most comfortable with (between 1 and 4) so that’s not why. Much like trying to get my kids to clean their rooms, I’m just ready for the next shiny thing.

On the plus side, this means you’ll be hearing from me more. Next blog post will show my favorite method for joining in the round! :)

Best Laid Plans, etc.

So, if you’ll remember back in November I wrote that this year I would absolutely NOT be knitting ANY presents? (If you don’t go read this¬†first. Go ahead. I’ll wait.) Yeah, well joke’s on me.

It started out innocently enough. I decided I’d knit two pair of the super popular Manly Mitts¬†for my husband’s company party gift swap. As 3 pairs had been requested (and received) by his coworkers, and it’s a quick and easy knit, I figured this would be simple enough.

Then I decided to knit 2 cup cozies for my youngest son’s PreK teachers as Christmas presents. Those were done in one long and sleepy night as I’d decided to do them a day before the last day of class.

Before all those, though, there was the cowl I knit for a friend. And the mitts I’m knitting for another friend. Said mitts are about 1/4 of the way done. Plus the thing I’m knitting for my mom, which I haven’t even cast on for yet. Oh! And the mitts I’m making for one of my youngest’s school friends.

I asked my husband the other night if I’d done the same thing last year. Apparently, yes, I had. And I’m sure I’ll do something similar next year. That’s ok because as the saying goes “The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry” and if me driving myself slightly crazier is my awry, well I’ll take it. :)

What last minute knitting are you trying to accomplish in the next 15 days? Let me know!

Perfection is NOT the goal

When I first started knitting (any of the times, because it happened EVERY time) I would knit for a few rows, find a mistake or twelve, get frustrated that it wasn’t “perfect” and quit. It took me much too long to realize that perfection is NOT the goal.

The goal is to make something. The closer to the pattern/idea the happier I am, I’ll admit. Attempting to make anything by hand and have it be perfect, though? That way lies madness.

Much like people, all the best handcrafted items have some sort of flaw. And if we’re 100% honest, the maker is the ONLY person that notices the “flaw”. I’ve seen more than one post on social media that is a picture of a finished object with the maker asking “How obvious is my screw up?” and I can tell you that even after scrutiny I can NEVER find it.

So, quit trying to make it “perfect” because nobody is perfect. Make what you love in the manner that makes you happy. And know that you have flaws (which aren’t negative) so your crafted item should have at least one, too. That way it’s an accurate reflection of your beauty out in the world for others to admire.

Where…

…did October go and how are we a third of the way through November already?! I decided early on in the year this year that I would not be doing any holiday gift knitting this year. I did, though, knit this super soft and warm hat for my mother-in-law’s birthday last month! I knit her an Everglade¬†out of a skein of Malabrigo Worsted Merino. The colorway is Alpine Pearl and it looks SMASHING on her!

Everglade Hat

I also untangled a skein of yarn for a friend. Now, I’ll admit that sometimes untangling a skein of yarn is something that makes me want to cry. Other times, I find it oddly soothing. This was one of those second times.

Before and After
Before and After

And finally! I am nearly done with my oldest current WIP. A baby blanket that I started WAY back in January. I should be done with it no later than the first of the month, when it will be sent by a awesome friend of mine to his baby nephew in New Jersey! As soon as it’s all done I’ll let you know!

What sort of excitement have y’all gotten up to while I was MIA? Let me know in the comments!

Finishing The WIP Pile

I have a bad habit of starting a large project, getting not quite halfway done, and abandoning it for something new, and portable, and quick. Startitis is totally a problem I suffer from. So, high on the feeling of finishing my Wurm, I decided to knock out the one WIP that’s been languishing in the corner since January. (Really?! Jeez, I didn’t realize it was that long!)

So the Diagonal Baby Blanket¬†is once again back in business. It’s not that it’s a hard pattern, it just seems to go on and on and on. And on some more. Luckily I’ve got more time recently to work on it and it seems to be moving at a pretty good pace. As of right now I’m nearing my halfway point and I know from experience that the decreases go MUCH faster than the increases. There’s also the bonus that any potential leftovers will go to my son’s pre-K class to be used in art supplies! Yay!

Once I hit the 50% point I’m rewarding myself with casting on Gansey Wristers¬†in a skein of Creating by A Verb for Keeping Warm¬†that I received as a gift. The colorway is called Aortic and it’s a tonal in shades of red. Wristers are my second favorite knitted item (after hats) and in my opinion there’s no such thing as too many pair!

What’s your current oldest WIP? Are you pretending it doesn’t currently exist or have you decided to tackle it in the hopes that you can start the new year with a clean knitting slate? Do you have a fun project to dangle as a carrot to keep you going?

FINISHED!

It took me much longer than I wanted, but my Wurm is FINALLY FINISHED!!!!!! WOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!

wurm side wurm

I’m so glad I finished this in time for the cooler weather that is coming. Eventually. It’s Florida so I’ve got awhile still, to be honest.

And since this is done it’s time for me to finish the blanket and sweater I have on the needles! I’ll most likely cast on something small and portable as well. I don’t like taking large projects out and about with me. How about you? Let me know in the comments!

Manic Monday

I officially have 2 kids in school. Thing 2 started Pre-K last week. While this will theoretically give me more time to write this lovely blog (which I have missed) and knit, so far it’s just meant I’ve had lots of labeling to do. And sewing!

My little man is a brony, and proud of it. However, it’s very difficult to find boy-ish My Little Pony things for little guys. So I made him his very own boy MLP backpack. I found a small Converse backpack that was navy blue with yellow (which is his favorite color) accents:

And I found some patches on Amazon 

 to turn it into this:

And as you can see, it made for a very happy boy on his first day of school.

In Wurm news, I’m decreasing as we speak. (Ok, not really, but humor me here. I stopped decreasing to write. :D) Tomorrow there will be pics! Is yours done? Link in the comments so I can love on your project page!

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